Citizens Advice call for automatic subscription renewals to be banned – Messenger Newspapers

People in the UK are spending hundreds of millions of pounds a year on subscriptions that renewed automatically without them realising, a charity has claimed.
Citizens Advice is calling for a ban on automatic subscription renewals as many find they forget to cancel after getting a free trial for a service.
Around 73% of people in the UK have at least one subscription, with more than £300m spent a year on unused ones.
In research conducted by Citizens Advice 82% of the people, they surveyed paying out on one reported that it had renewed automatically.
Messenger Newspapers: People are spending more than £300m on unused subscriptions in the UKPeople are spending more than £300m on unused subscriptions in the UK (Image: PA)
Meanwhile, just over a quarter (26%) had signed up for a subscription by accident, with most doing so because they did not get around to cancelling a free trial.
The Government has announced plans to tackle subscription traps with reminders sent at the end of free trials and at the point of renewal, but Citizens Advice said it wanted a ban on automatic renewals.
This is because of the techniques used to sell them, the charity said, and the burying of future costs and exit fees in the small print of terms and conditions.
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Citizens Advice chief executive Dame Clare Moriarty said: “With budgets increasingly squeezed and everyday living costs spiralling, it’s vital consumers feel in control of their spending. But many are currently feeling trapped in unused or unwanted subscriptions that can be difficult to break free of.
“Whilst the Government’s plans to tackle subscription traps are a positive first step, they don’t go far enough. More can and has to be done.
“Banning auto-renewals and ensuring people have to opt-in, rather than opt-out of subscriptions after receiving a free trial would lead to safer and better-designed subscriptions and would save consumers millions of pounds.”
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